Orban Optimod on FOX

More channels means more money for the techs, right?
Post Reply
Posts: 19
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2014 10:02 pm

Orban Optimod on FOX

Post by castr_320 » Sat Apr 06, 2019 6:26 am

Good morning,

Over the years, I've gotten quite immersed in the world of FM audio processing along with some netcasting as well.

Recently, I began researching and understanding DTV audio processing. Everything makes sense to me thus far except for a couple of things.

The other day, I was watching FOX during prime time. To my surprise, the audio did not sound like it was processed with an Orban Optimod-TV processor. I imagined that the big guys like FOX would use Orban Optimods in combination with perhaps an Ariane pre-processor (as is done in FM radio).

Is Orban not the dominating force in the digital television audio processing market? Does anyone have any insight as to what FOX might use during their prime time hours for the audio processing?

As a final note, I do not have a surround system, so what I listened to was the stereo signal.

Site Admin
Posts: 3110
Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2007 9:13 pm
Location: Taunton, MA

Re: Orban Optimod on FOX

Post by NECRAT » Sat Apr 06, 2019 6:53 am

castr_320 wrote:
Sat Apr 06, 2019 6:26 am

As a final note, I do not have a surround system, so what I listened to was the stereo signal.
It's funny you mention FOX versus any other network because FOX does it differently than most other networks, on most stations. Depending on the market you live in, as a few are NOT doing this method anymore, but most still are, Fox is 100% controlling all the audio you're hearing, not the affiliate. FOX stations use this device known as the "Splicer". It is an ASI grooming/switching device that has one input coming from the local affiliate's control, and a second input coming direct off of the Motorola receiver. The device takes the two ASI signals, grooms them to be in time, passes through sub-channels, and other information. When the time comes to go to network, the local affiliate sends a contact closure to the splicer, which then switches the ASI from the local to the network. So when you are in Network you're hearing audio direct from the network's own encoders.
In Dolby 5.1, it is typically done that the audio processing is done in the Dolby Encoder. Many stations used (and still use) a Dolby DP569 or similar encoder, made by Dolby Labs themselves. There are other audio processors on the market. A popular one is made by Linear Acoustics (Telos, the Omnia people). The linear acoustics boxes are nice, because they can do the Dolby encoding, Nielsen encoding, and all the other necessary things. I haven't seen much from Orban in this market, as I think they tend to orient towards radio these days. I know they do make some TV gear, but I haven't seen much of it when I travel to other stations. Back in the older analog days, the Orban processors where very popular. Stations either had them or the Modulation Sciences boxes, and you could tell the difference listening. I still have my first station's Orban Optimod TV in my basement.

"Arguing with an engineer is like mud wrestling with a pig. After a couple of hours, you realize the pig likes it"

Post Reply